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Summary

  1. Result: Mark Selby 18-15 John Higgins
  2. Selby defends his title and wins his third World Championship in four years
  3. Selby trailed 10-4 before fighting back
  4. Controversy in frame 31 after referee says Selby did not hit the black and Higgins went on to win the frame
  5. Selby made 131 break in 32nd frame and 78 in final frame

Live Reporting

By Michael Emons

All times stated are UK

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A great end to a great tournament

Mark Selby beats John Higgins 18-15 to win his third world title

It has been a great championship, and we got the dramatic final we were hoping for.

Mark Selby looked down and out at 10-4 behind on Sunday evening, he then took charge at 16-12, before John Higgins fought back to make it 16-15.

But Selby got himself over the line by winning two frames to collect his third title.

Click here to read Shamoon Hafez's report and all that is left for me is to say thank you for all your excellent comments. We hope you enjoyed it as much as we did.

Thanks for joining us and bye for now.

Mark Selby
Getty Images

'Close to the ceiling of performance'

Selby 18-15 Higgins

Steve Davis

Six-time world champion at The Crucible

When we look at the field of players that are potential winners here, to think there is a dominant character forcing his way through is amazing.

Selby is an exceptional player and exceptional match player. It is going to take some young player coming through who takes every part of his game and becomes stronger to knock him off his perch. 

We're close to the ceiling of performance now.

Mark Selby
Getty Images

Great scenes

Mark Selby beats John Higgins 18-15 to win his third world title

Another angle of Mark Selby's celebrations, courtesy of BBC Sport's Seema Jaswal.

BBC Sport app users may need to click on the below link to see the video.

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Mark Selby beats John Higgins 18-15 to win his third world title

ROSBrazil Snooker: Amazing event once again, the Snooker World Championship just keeps growing worldwide! Also loved the #BBCSnooker coverage.

Osian‏: Fair play to Mark Selby. Third World Championship in four years is hugely impressive! Great final!

Andy Crawley: Superb snooker final, can't knock John Higgins for his effort but got to hand it to Mark Selby - he's simply unstoppable!

Mark Selby
BBC

'Higgins can go on for a few years'

Mark Selby beats John Higgins 18-15 to win his third world title

Steve Davis

Six-time world champion at The Crucible

What a fillip for John Higgins' career, it must inspire him.

When he looks back at the season he has had, he must think it is wonderful in what can be considered the autumn of his career. 

He can go for a good few years yet.  

Watch: How Selby won the title

Mark Selby beats John Higgins 18-15 to win his third world title

Relive the closing moments of Mark Selby's famous win as he became a three-time world champion.

Mark Selby beats John Higgins 18-15 to win his third world title

John Parrott

1991 world champion at The Crucible

Mark Selby is a truly brilliant player. John Higgins couldn’t say it any better. Granite.

The two of them are exemplary. John has won four world championships and Mark three.

It is no coincidence. They are suited to these longer formats and they know their way better than most.

It’s going to take a lot to knock this guy off the world number one spot.

Mark Selby celebrates
PA

'Something I could only dream of'

Selby 18-15 Higgins

Three-time world champion Mark Selby says: "I can't believe it, I am still pinching myself now. From 10-4 to get to 10-7 yesterday, I was over the moon as I had nothing left. He outplayed me yesterday. Today I came back fresh and was a lot better.

"When I was 10-4 down I was missing everything and had nothing left. I said 'pull something together'. If you lose, you want to at least go down fighting."

On the foul controversy in frame 31, Selby says: "I thought it touched, Jan (Verhaas) said it didn't and I trust him.

"You have to put it out of your mind. Big congratulations to John, he is a great guy, and one of the all-time greats and it is so great to play him in another final. To have three world titles is unbelievable and to be one of only four players to defend it is something I could only dream of."

And now some quotes from our champion, Mark Selby.

Mark Selby
BBC

Selby is a great champion - Higgins

Selby 18-15 Higgins

Runner-up John Higgins says: "Mark is granite, just granite. In the second session I had my chances, I missed a pink into the middle bag and I could have gone 9-3 ahead.

"That was a big, big frame. Mark cleared up under extreme pressure. He is a fantastic champion.

"It has been an unbelievable tournament, I gave everything. I came up short to a great champion. I'm proud of myself but he was too good on the day."

John Higgins
BBC

SELBY WINS THE 2017 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP

Frame 33: Selby 18-15 Higgins (80-19, Selby 75)

A break of 75 takes him over the line and there are hugs everywhere. Higgins hugs Selby, they hug among Selby's family and friends.

Selby is a three-time world champion after his previous successes in 2014 and 2016.

John Higgins
BBC
Selby and Higgins
BBC
Finish
BBC
Finish
BBC

Frame 33: Selby 17-15 Higgins

There goes a red with the rest, he punches the air. That should be it for Selby.

Frame 33: Selby 17-15 Higgins

Remember, Mark Selby was 10-4 down and looking out of it last night. What a recovery. What a performance. What a champion. (63-19)

Frame 33: Selby 17-15 Higgins

The lead is at 40 points. Everything is out in the open.

Frame 33: Selby 17-15 Higgins

Higgins, looking pensive, can only sit, hope and pray to get back to the table.

Selby's third world title could happen in the next few minutes. (42-19)

Frame 33: Selby 17-15 Higgins

The Selby lead is 26-19. The title is there for him.

Did he hit it? The black ball mystery of 2017...

Still can't decide?

Watch it again. And again. And again.

Did he hit it? Black ball mystery costs Selby

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Frame 33: Selby 17-15 Higgins

Dazz‏: They think it's all over....

Nicola Marshall: It's getting late, I need to go to bed, can't stop watching.

You can't go to bed now! 

Frame 33: Selby 17-15 Higgins

Chance for Selby. This could be it. (12-19, still a lot to do).

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Frame 33: Selby 17-15 Higgins

Luke Davies: This final is gripping! Would love a final-frame decider.

John Higgins
AFP

Frame 33: Selby 17-15 Higgins

The table hands back to Selby for a safety exchange, as he now trails 19-5. This is tense, safety snooker at its best. Higgins knows that one mistake and it is all over for him.

Frame 33: Selby 17-15 Higgins

This is the view from where Selby's family have been watching the match.

Frame 33
BBC

No-one is going anywhere. Higgins has just rolled a red in the middle and leads 14-5. Can he extend this final by one further frame?

Watch: Selby's 131 century break

Frame 33: Selby 17-15 Higgins

Watch the closing stages of Mark Selby's 131 century break which has left him just one frame away from the title.

Watch: 'Too much haggis' jokes Higgins

Frame 33: Selby 17-15 Higgins

After all the controversy of frame 31, John Higgins lightens the mood by joking that he can't climb on to the table for a tricky shot as he has eaten "too much haggis". A nice moment, and one you can watch again here...

Frame 33: Selby 17-15 Higgins

Higgins has to cue over the green, and eagle-eyed referee Jan Verhaas spots that Higgins hits the green with his cue, before sending the cue ball into the pack of reds. Selby gets another four points closer to the trophy.

This is what he had to do...

Frame 33
BBC

...and this is what he did.

Frame 33
BBC

Frame 33: Selby 17-15 Higgins

Selby gets a red to the middle for the first point of what may well be the last frame of the competition and then sticks Higgins in a snooker, with the cueball welded in behind the green. (1-0)

Frame 33
BBC

Selby needs one after excellent century

Frame 32: Selby 17-15 Higgins (132-0, Selby 131)

Vicky Selby
BBC

Amid all the controversy, Selby has got his mind back on the game (it didn't take long) and is closing in on the title.

He is one away from glory. A century break of 131, to crush Higgins' spirit, takes the Englishman to the brink of the title.

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Frame 32: Selby 16-15 Higgins

Joseph Rutter: Wouldn't be a May bank holiday without some late-night drama at the Crucible. 

Craig Steeples: Should be going to be bed but gripped by the snooker!!! Yes I said gripped by the snooker!!

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Frame 32: Selby 16-15 Higgins

Luigina Ciolfi: I'm cross-eyed with tiredness, but cannot possibly stop watching this now... 

Rob Blake: Forgot how much I love this game. Sheer class #thetensionmounts

Roxy Dodd: This is getting close. Up early for work tomorrow but no way im missing this.

Frame 32: Selby 16-15 Higgins

Back to the action, and Selby has taken his break into the 50s. He is closing in on frame 17 of the 18 he needs. (51-0)

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Frame 32: Selby 16-15 Higgins

We're getting a bit deep for nearly half ten at night...

Scotty Little: Just looked again and he double hit the white anyway, so he actually fouled twice #bbcsnooker

Matthew Hersee: Schrodinger's snooker. Both did and did not hit the black. (Probably depending on who you want to win).

Mark Selby
Getty Images

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Frame 32: Selby 16-15 Higgins

Z‏: "Too much haggis." Only in snooker at such a high level in such a tense stage will you see such scenes.

Frame 32: Selby 16-15 Higgins

So in frame 32 (version 2.0) we still haven't had as many points as we had in the original. It's proving to be the tricky sequel at the moment.

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Frame 32: Selby 16-15 Higgins

James McCann: It gets even better.. a re-rack!

Dean Anderson: This has final frame decider written all over it!

Ben Gosling: You seriously couldn't ask for a better final than this for the Crucible's 40 year anniversary - I'm glued to the screen!

 

Frame 32: Selby 16-15 Higgins

'Too much haggis' jokes John Higgins as he struggles to climb on to the table to reach a long shot.

These bad jokes are contagious. They're everywhere.

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Frame 32: Selby 16-15 Higgins

David Baker: The debate is bigger than the chicken or the egg did the white touch the black? Ref was spot on.

Andy Powell: Scenes at the snooker. Physics rewritten as black clearly hit from 1 angle, and clearly not from another. Adjudication in: Selby hit the black in 4k, feathered it in HD, missed by a mile in SD.

Pundits' view

Frame 32: Selby 16-15 Higgins

Watch what the pundits thought about the referee's 'was it a foul' call in the 31st frame.